Leonard Ncube, Online Reporter
THE Zimbabwe Foundation for Education with Production (ZIMFEP) has rolled out a nationwide livestock project to capacitate schools with income-generating projects.
ZIMFEP is an organisation under the Zanu-PF Department of Education headed by Dr Joram Gumbo.
It was established before independence at refugee camps in Zambia and Mozambique to help youths that dropped out of school to join the liberation struggle.
A decision was been made to revive it in the Second Republic.
Already dozens of vulnerable learners have benefitted from Presidential scholarships to pursue their secondary education at ZIMFEP schools in different provinces.
Binga has 40 children that benefitted and are at Fatima and George Silundika high schools.
The scholarship is one of the strategies by the Second Republic to leave no one or no place behind in pursuit of National Development Strategy 1 towards the vision for an upper middle-income society by 2030.
At the moment ZIMFEP is empowering Schools with indigenous chickens, goats, and pigs for rearing projects.
ZIMFEP director Mr Gideon Chiukira said the projects are not only targeted at ZIMFEP schools but all learning institutions.
A school gets a single pregnant pig and a flock of road runner chickens.
Four pigs were recently distributed to some schools in Binga while Fatima High School in Lupane and Chinotimba Primary School in Victoria Falls got 200 chickens each.
Thirty six pregnant pigs were delivered at Mzinyathini High School for distribution to Matabeleland South schools while close to a thousand chickens will be distributed in Bulilima this week.
“ZIMFEP is powering schools particularly in rural areas amd we are targeting all Schools with selection done by the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, ” said Mr Chiukira.
He said ZIMFEP and the Ministry have a Memorandum of Understanding to help the educational sector with income generating projects for schools to sustain themselves without requesting every need from parents.
“We have delivered 36 pigs and more than1 000 roadrunners for distribution to schools in Matabeleland South. As for Matabeleland North we have given four pigs in Binga and chickens to Fatima and Chinotimba, ” he said.
Chickens are given to any school that shows interest and has facilities while pigs are only given to those whose enrolment has a business sense and have capacity to keep pigs.
JZ High School in Matabeleland South already benefitted from the first round of the chicken project and have applied for another batch.
Primary and Secondary Education Minister Dr Eveline Ndlovu will distribute about 800 chicks in Bulawayo this Thursday while ZIMFEP is still mobilising goats.
ZIMFEP has organised a pig management training programme to be conducted at Fatima High School next month where 300 teachers and other stakeholders from Matabeleland North and South, Midlands and Bulawayo are expected to attend.
“We are trying to capacitate Schools to generate revenue. We want rural butchering to be supplied by schools so that they can purchase learning materials without having to trouble parents,” he said.
The project is a Presidential programme which was started after reintroduction of ZIMFEP.
“So far we are happy with children who got scholarships as they are well behaved and now this project is a masterpiece. Schools will be able to self sustain. This will also help improve pass rates,” added Mr Chiukira.
He said ZIMFEP will help link schools with the market.